I am looking forward to a successful 2016-2017 school year at The Olive Tree Montessori Academy (TOTMA). This is my 18th year in education and I feel very fortunate to serve as a principal for another year. I have obtained my Montessori Certification for all elementary levels; primary, lower elementary, and upper elementary. I obtained my teaching certificate in 2007 after completing my B.S. in Education from U.T. Arlington. Then in May 2014, I obtained my Masters in Instructional Leadership with a principal’s certification from Concordia. My academic background and experience have shaped my philosophy on education.
I strongly believe the purpose of an educational institute is to provide students with a safe and comfortable learning environment that allows all students to thrive in all areas. Furthermore, it is my goal that TOTMA provides a learning environment in which students are given opportunities to build and establish a moral and humble character powered with confidence and self-assurance. Students experience positive relationships with their peers and the educators of TOTMA. These positive relationships are built of mutual respect and kindness and thrive in experiences where collaboration and individual responsibility is at the center. In this environment students are empowered to take charge of their education and future. Teachers and students alike are not afraid to take risks and learn from their failures.
I have been an educator for virtually two decades and instructed learners of many different backgrounds, developmental stages, and needs. These experiences have strengthened my belief in the thought that human beings are innate learners. The young child wants to learn, desires growth, and will achieve his/her potential if allowed to. It is my responsibility to lead TOTMA so that the prepared learning environment is provided for every student. Maria Montessori said it best, “The environment must be rich in motives which lend interest to activity and invite the child to conduct his own experiences.”
There are many degrees of preparation in ensuring that the environment is prepared, sound, and ready for all learners. It certainly needs to be dressed with the necessary tools and resources conducive to learning. These necessary tools and resources will be applied to each individual learner’s intellectual needs due to data driven findings and research.
In addition the environment will be concerned with each learner’s basic needs. A hungry child is a child that cannot learn. I feel greatly blessed that I serve in a district that values nutrition with such passion. TOTMA students are fed healthy, nutritious, and delicious meals. Canned foods and processed meats are not used. Fresh ingredients are only used.
Also of great importance in the prepared learning environment is that each student feel free from fear and have a sense of belonging with peers and classmates. With bullying at its height in schools throughout our nation, I make it a very personal goal to ensure that all TOTMA students know that they are safe and in a bully free zone.
Additionally, in this prepared environment at TOTMA, I believe all learners: students, staff, and parents should be active and collaborative participants of the learning process. Our educational institute is decorated with diversity and each family brings in a unique color that creates the most beautiful rainbow. We have many opportunities for parental involvement and I personally encourage every parent to be an active and known presence at TOTMA.
Thank you for allowing me to serve you as your child’s principal and leader. Please stop by anytime to say “hello” or introduce yourself to me. If you ever need anything of me, you may contact me anytime via phone or email. I am so excited for a great school year!